POSS Surfaces: How They Impact Biological and Industrial Polymer Coatings
Advancement in the performance of polymer-based products has led to a search for new technologies. This search, as in many other fields, has increasingly focused on smaller and smaller length scales. Thus, over the past 50 years, the sought-after level of control has progressed from “macro”, i.e. millimeter scale fibers & fillers; to the “micro”, i.e. millionth of a meter providing morphological control; to the “nano”, i.e. billionth of a meter representing true molecular level control.
It has also become axiomatic in the plastics industry to regard the development of new resins as too capital-intensive, expensive and fraught with risk with regard to ultimate market acceptance. However, nowhere is the search for new polymeric materials more intense nor the possible rewards for such efforts greater than in the fields of industrial coatings and biological surface.
In light of the above, POSS chemicals used as additives, provide a simple tool for the realization of new physical characteristics in industrial and biological coatings. At only 1.5 nm in diameter, POSS cages provide a tremendous amount of surface area and volume control when incorporated into formulations. The control of surface area and volume in polymers often leads to improved flow, adhesion, and active ingredient carrying capacity of common resins.
Specific examples of how surface area and volume control can be utilized to realize new characteristics in acrylic and epoxy coatings, urethane polymers, and rubber moldings will be presented.